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Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering
SJR: 0.504 SNIP: 0.671 CiteScore™: 1.65

ISSN Print: 1072-8325
ISSN Online: 1940-431X

Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering

DOI: 10.1615/JWomenMinorScienEng.v8.i2.20
26 pages

HISPANIC STUDENTS MAJORING IN SCIENCE OR ENGINEERING: WHAT HAPPENED IN THEIR EDUCATIONAL JOURNEYS?

Susan Wightman Brown
New Mexico State University, College of Education, USA

ABSTRACT

National statistics clearly demonstrate an under representation of minorities and women in the fields of science and engineering. Using Seidman's in-depth interviewing method, 22 Hispanic students, 12 female and 10 male, who were majoring in science or engineering were interviewed. These students were observed in their college science or engineering classes, their high school and college transcripts were analyzed, and they participated in a focus group. What made a difference in the educational journeys of these 22 students so that they could succeed т majors that have historically discouraged female and minority students? Seven themes emerged: family support, an honors program, a challenging and interactive curriculum, college preparation in high school courses, caring and kind teachers, small class sizes, and small communities. Educators must take note of these themes, which made a lasting difference in the students' futures, enabling them to choose science or engineering as their fields of study.


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